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Zim

Big Asted Eel

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The New Jersey Department of Environmental Protection's Division of

Fish and Wildlife has certified a new freshwater state record American

eel that was caught from Round Valley Reservoir on June 4. David J.

Payne of Plainfield caught a 6 pound, 13 ounce American eel that weighed

11 ounces more than the previous record taken from Round Valley in 1994.

 

 

Payne was on shore casting for trout when he hooked the eel on a live

shiner. Payne claims he saw trout all around and was convinced he had

one until his catch came closer to the surface. His "surprise" measured

41¾ inches in length.

 

The American eel can be found statewide in rivers, streams, ponds and

reservoirs. American eels possess a slender, muscular, snake-like body

with a small pointed head. The dorsal fin is long, extending more than

half the length of the body. They have short, rounded pectoral fins, but

no pelvic fins. The mouth has numerous small teeth. Male eels seldom

exceed 24 inches in length, but females can reach up to 40 inches.

 

Adult American eels migrate to the Sargasso Sea, a calm area in the

Atlantic Ocean east of the Bahamas and south of Bermuda, to spawn. The

larvae reside in the upper few hundred feet of ocean for up to a year

and slowly migrate back to the eastern shores of North America. By the

time they reach the estuaries and rivers in March and early April, they

have transformed into small transparent eels (glass eels). As the young

eels develop pigmentation they become known as elvers and will remain in

fresh water until sexually mature. When ready to reproduce, they migrate

back to the Sargasso Sea late in the fall. Prior to this migration, they

sport a silvery color. Once spawning occurs, they die.

 

Adult eels primarily eat fish, but will feed upon anything they find.

In lakes and reservoirs, they reside in shallow coves with muddy

bottoms. Eels are most active at night and spend the winter months

buried in the mud. In streams and rivers, they can be found in pool

areas with plenty of cover in the form of fallen trees and branches, as

well as undercut banks where they prefer clear water, but will tolerate

moderately cloudy conditions.

 

The Division has categories for American eel caught in both freshwater

and saltwater. The current saltwater state record is 9 pounds, 13 ounces

caught in 1988 off Atlantic City.

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You could toss that with a 1209 no problem.

 

You could also make nice eel skin stocking foot waders redface.gif

 

TimS

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You could toss that with a 1209 no problem.

 

You could also make nice eel skin stocking foot waders redface.gif

 

TimS

 

<currently wiping cola off my terminal> cwm27.gif

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